Category Archives: Event Summary

Warmer, below average precipitation for November and fall in Okarche

The average temperature in Okarche for November was 51.3 degrees which was 2.3 degrees above average.  Despite slightly below average temperature in September and October, fall came in with an average of 62.1 degrees which was 0.3 of a degree above average.

The total precipitation for November was 0.29 of an inch which ranked as the 6th driest November of record.  This was 1.80 inches below average or 14% of average.   The total precipitation this fall was 6.81 inches which was 1.52 inches below average or 82% of average.

Thanksgiving weather

The low temperature this morning in Okarche was 32 degrees… one degree lower than the average for Thanksgiving.

The forecast high today is 70 degrees… well above the 57 degree average for the holiday.

Precipitation has only fallen on 7 of the last 36 Thanksgiving days.  Sunny skies are expected today as we continue to roll through a period of short-term drought.

November 18 cold fronts

For the second year in a row, a strong cold front moved through Oklahoma on November 18th.  Last year, it led to the first freeze of the season.  While we have already knocked out our first freeze this year, the temperature did fall to 30 degrees on the morning of the 19th.

In 2016, winds gusted to 42 mph and the daily range in pressure was 0.87 of an inch which tied for the third greatest range.

This year, winds gusted to 56 mph and the barometer made a move of 0.85 of an inch (29.49 to 30.35 inches) – making it the 5th greatest daily range on record.

Record warm air

Most of the state today saw temperatures in the 80′s with 90-94 degree temperatures for highs over portions of west central and southwest Oklahoma.

In Okarche, the high temperature of 82 degrees broke the old record of 78 degrees which was reached in 1952, 1966 and 1969. (Records back to 1936)

In Oklahoma City, the high temperature of 82 degrees broke the old record of 80 degrees set all the way back in 1896. (Records back to 1890)

A record high of 84 degrees was reached in Lawton.

A record high of 83 degrees was reached in Tulsa.

Record low temperature

The low temperature in Okarche on October 28th was a record setting 25 degrees.  The previous record was 28 degrees set in 2012.

This was the first freeze of the season, occurring three days before the average of October 31st.

October 21, 2017 Storm Chase

Severe thunderstorms developed across a large part of Oklahoma on the 21st and a Tornado Watch was issued.

Rocky Rascovich was along for the ride as we drove to southwest Oklahoma and targeted storms over western Tillman and southern Kiowa counties.

The first activity we came across was near Snyder.  Here, a storm had split with the left mover producing very large hail as it moved northward, while the right moving storm decreased in size and looked generally uninteresting.  We drove south on Highway 183 through Manitou and observed a rapidly increasing storm to our southwest.

This storm also send off a left mover, but the remnant right moving storm maintained volume and exhibited supercell characteristics early.  Very large hail started falling with the storm and we measured 2.35 inch hail in Manitou on our trip back north and east.

Between Manitou and Indiahoma, rotation began increasing with the storm and we observed a well defined funnel cloud to the south southwest of Indiahoma.  There were reports that this feature was a weak tornado, but we didn’t see hard evidence of that from our vantage.

Funnel and radar at the time:

The mesocyclone started to become wrapped in rain as we drove east on Highway 62 toward Lawton.  We basically cut through the center of the meso on our drive and experienced an abrupt north to south wind shift with sustained winds between 40 and 50 mph on both sides.  Again, there were reports that a tornado occurred here, but we never saw enough to confirm that.  The rain curtains contained a considerable amount of leaves, but nothing larger.

We stopped at the Cache exit to get a few pictures of the impressive storm to our northwest.  If a tornado was occurring at this point, it was distant and very low contrast for us.

Navigating around Fort Sill, we went east to I-44 and north, exited on to Highway 281 and stopped near Richards Spur (south of Apache).  Darkness was quickly approaching at this point and our chase day was basically finished.  Radar didn’t show strong indications that a tornado was occurring, but the storm was still quite impressive.

Storm and radar at the time:

We started home on the H.E. Bailey Turnpike.  The storm was off to our west and northwest, and we were pretty much precipitation free on our ride to Chickasha.  Before we got to our exit, the storm had reorganized and became quite intense.  A tornado / possibly a large and long-lived tornado / was likely occurring several miles to our west southwest.  We made a half hearted attempt to drive west out of Chickasha in hopes of seeing something, but the danger area had become heavily rain-wrapped and was moving in our direction.  We made the safe choice and started north on Highway 81 to allow the storm to pass to our south.  Heavy traffic slowed us down and we ended up getting clipped by a bit of hail and heavy rain, but nothing too serious on our way back to El Reno for dinner.